Southern Coconut Cake 

Prep Time: 30 minutes | Cook Time: 25 minutes



  • 5 eggs, separated
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
  • For The Frosting
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 cups shredded coconut


Preheat your oven to 325ºF and grease 2 10-inch cake rounds.

In a large bowl beat with an electric mixer the butter, sugar, vanilla extract and oil until blended. Add the egg yolks, one at a time, until well incorporated.

In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add to the butter mixture and combine. Beat in the buttermilk until well combined. Fold in the coconut.

In a clean bowl whip the egg whites and cream of tartar on high, until stiff peaks form. Whisk in about a fourth of the egg whites into the butter mixture, then fold in the rest.

Pour batter into cake rounds and bake until a toothpick inserted comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool 10 minutes before removing from cake pans. Transfer to a wire cooling rack and cool completely.

For The Frosting

In a large bowl beat with an electric mixer the butter and coconut milk until creamy. Add the powdered sugar and beat until light and fluffy.

Place one cake on a plate and top with frosting and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of coconut. Place the second cake on top and frost the outside entirely. Sprinkle the rest of the coconut on the top and sides of the cake.


To make whipping the egg whites easier, remove the eggs from the fridge at least 30 minutes prior to whipping.

You can also make this in a 13x9-inch glass pan. Frost the top of the cake and top with coconut.

Perfect Pairing

Serve this Coconut Cake as a dessert for this One-Pot Broccoli and Sausage Pasta.